Milder storm to bring rain, risk of flooding in coastal Washington, Oregon; Snow to spread farther inland

By Alex Sosnowski, AccuWeather senior meteorologist
February 15, 2019, 12:47:32 PM EST

Following the onslaught of storms with record snow along the coasts of Washington and Oregon, a storm into Friday will bring rain and the risk of flooding to coastal areas while snow falls across the interior and over the mountains.

Much of the region caught a break from storms on Wednesday as a storm took aim at California.

However, that break has ended for most areas with unsettled conditions in store for the balance of the week.

static NW friday 2/15

While an excessive amount of rain is not foreseen, even a moderate amount of rain combined with melting snow and piles of snow blocking storm drains can lead to street and highway flooding. Anyone traveling in Seattle and the hills around Seattle and Portland, Oregon, as well as much of the Interstate 5 corridor should be aware of this threat.

The milder conditions around sea level will allow storm cleanup to continue.

However, more snow is forecast at pass levels in the Cascades and areas across interior Washington and Oregon. So while motorists in the I-5 corridor may be relieved of the evolving milder weather conditions, those heading to the east can expect renewed difficulties related to wintry conditions as the week draws to a close and the weekend begins.

Around 6-12 inches may fall over the high country of the Cascades with a few inches likely at the passes and areas well to the east in Washington and Oregon. Around The Dalles, Oregon, up to few more inches of snow can fall from this storm. With less moisture forecast to reach Spokane, Washington, only a fresh coating to an inch or two is forecast.

As the storm moves along, slightly colder air is forecast to circulate in and cause snow levels to dip to a few hundred feet, including around the Seattle area.

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Snow showers may cover the ground over the hills in the coastal areas as a result during Friday night and Saturday.

As snow continues to pile up on the steep slopes of the mountains and temperatures fluctuate, the risk of avalanches will increase.

Download the free AccuWeather app to see the latest forecast and advisories for your area.

Few things reflect the power of nature and weather like avalanches. This week host, Regina Miller talks to Mark Staples, director of the Utah Avalanche Center, and Dan Burnett, Group Mission coordinator for the Summit County Rescue Group in Breckenridge, Colorado. They discuss recent deaths on the slopes, the weather situations that can contribute to an avalanche, the dangers of human interaction, and how best to survive.

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